Credible reports of mystery beast sightings near Amberley have been circulating for more than 20 years, according to a big cat expert.
Commenting on last week’s big cat sighting near Amberley, as featured in Stroud Times, the big cats’ podcaster, Rick Minter, said black panthers and large tan-coloured cats resembling mountain lions or cougars, have been pinpointed near Culver Hill.
Rick said: “Some witnesses have been dog walkers, with their dogs reacting nervously, indicating it’s not just a person experiencing something unusual.”
Rick pointed out that the scrub edges of the Stroud commons and woods would be sometimes patrolled by these cats, in their pursuit of deer, which they ambush from the cover of the scrub – and in early summer, the cats will be targeting fawns, especially.
Stroud Times put Rick in touch with the woman, who didn’t want to be named, and she told the big cat expert the mystery animal was tan coloured and big enough to predate a deer. She described it as sleek and muscular, with a long and drooping tail and a wild gait and swift movement and certainly not tame and fat on food.
Last year, broadcaster Clare Balding discussed big cat sightings with Rick in the Stroud valleys area on BBC Radio 4’s Ramblings show, following her own black panther encounter in neighbouring Herefordshire in 2014.
Rick’s fortnightly podcast, Big Cat Conversations, hears direct from big cat witnesses across Britain, giving them space to discuss their experiences and emotions. Several episodes have come from Gloucestershire and the Stroud area, reflecting the ongoing reports in the county.